Jay and Justin

Do you know what’s awesome? A kayak down the river to your wedding ceremony! Today’s rustic river wedding is a little Hawaiian inspired, a little homespun and very community embraced!

Now for their story, which I love because it is every bit fate. “We met as small children living on Thursday Island in the Torres Strait – we were childhood sweethearts. At the age of 10 we were separated by our families relocating, but every time we lost touch with each other Justin always managed to find me somehow. He has spent many a night calling all of the families in the phone book with my last name until he tracked me down!”

The beautiful heart felt photos are captured by Katie K at Heartstory Photography.

The groom made a spectacular entrance, Jay telling, “Justin made an entrance to our ceremony in his kayak, lead in by his best man, heralded by horns from the support boat and flanked by a flotilla of our friends from our paddling club. It was an amazing flotilla – Justin arrived before me and so one of our guests taped the flotilla for me and I sobbed as I watched it back, it was just so fabulous. and thankfully, our photographer Katie was there to capture it all for me to see all of the great moments.”

Jay walked down the aisle to Justine Clarke “How Many Stars?”

One of Jay’s favourite memories occurred right at the start of the ceremony. She tells, “Standing in front of our family and friends at the beginning of the ceremony with Justin on one side and our daughter Abby on the other side, and our son Isaac looking up from his iPod and announcing to the 100 strong crowd that he had just got all the piggies in his game of Angry Birds!”

“We were married on the Molonglo River where we paddle kayaks with the Burley Griffin Canoe Club, under a giant tree surrounded by family and friends (and the resident swans and geese!).”

“I loved the special details that everyone helped us with, the flowers, decorations, the amazing MC, the speeches, the cake, my daughter Abby even made the colourful bracelet I wore on the day – everywhere we turned we could see the love and effort our friends and family had contributed.”

Jay and her bridesmaids wore gowns from Kirrily Johnston.

Of their photographer, Jay says, “Katie is a dream to work with. She has a great eye and resounding authenticity you can see in every frame. She captures the best of the day and exquisite magic of the light that we are so lucky to have here in Canberra. Having Katie there to capture our day was just like having an extra member of the family with us to celebrate; she and her second shooter Simon were a dream. I couldn’t be more ecstatic with my images from the day (and from our engagement shoot). Love you Katie!”

Too Good to Eat (0410 615 501) created the wedding cake.

“My bridesmaids and I made the table decorations and the favors. The boxes that were the table centrepieces were filled with marshmallows for toasting on the fire after dinner. My bridesmaid Sacha did all of our gorgeous floristry. It was an epic achievement on Sacha’s behalf, especially seeing as I have very unique taste in bouquets!” Guests also received tea from Adore Tea.

Tuggeranong Homestead was chosen for the reception, Jay explaining, “We then had an evening reception at the Tuggeranong Homestead in their Machinery Shed, after drinks and canapes in the garden. The Homestead was gorgeous and suited our pared down aesthetic. There was heaps of room for children to roam and explore and the staff were so friendly and welcoming.”

“Our beautiful children were there to help to us celebrate the day, in the ceremony, the first dance and cutting the cake – and they both dressed up in their own special ways. Some of the best details were just the expression of who we are – Justin in his Hawaiian shirt, me in my relaxed dress, self-written Dr Seuss-style wedding vows, our kayak-themed wedding cake and our amazing family and friends who made the day so special.”

“Our first dance was to Jason Mraz’ ‘I’m Yours’ and it was fun, joyful and had everyone on the dancefloor. All the kids we had as guests got up there with gusto as well and showed us ‘oldies’ how it was done. It was so lovely to look around the room and see all of our loved ones smiling and dancing with us.”

Congratulations Jay and Justin! Thank you for sharing your wedding day with us! Thank you also to Katie K at Heartstory Photography for sharing today’s images with us!